How To Prepare for Your Teen’s Bar Mitzvah

A bar mitzvah, or a bat mitzvah, is a Jewish coming-of-age ritual celebrated by boys on their 13th birthday and girls on their 12th birthday. Boys celebrate a bar mitzvah while girls celebrate a bat mitzvah. The expectations will differ depending on the synagogue or school, and teens will usually lead prayers and read text from the Torah. Some synagogues and schools also require other tasks such as written reports or volunteer projects. If you’re planning your teen’s bar mitzvah, then you’ll want to check out this list for some ideas.

Rent activities for the reception.

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A bar mitzvah often involves a huge celebration. Your child’s party will likely include your family members as well as their friends and peers. You’ll want to make sure that there are plenty of activities for the reception to keep the kids entertained. Look for bar mitzvah game rentals like ping pong, foosball, basketball, or even some arcade games like Street Fighter and Pac-Man. You can even rent out a photo booth with props and disguises to make the party exciting and memorable.

Find the perfect outfit for you and your teen.

Most teens look forward to shopping for an outfit that will help them feel and look their best. Finding the perfect ensemble for both you and your teen is an essential step in the process. Check out women’s clothing stores and teen’s clothing stores before your child’s bat mitzvah or bar mitzvah. Consider all types of dresses, shirts, and accessories for the special occasion.

Make sure there’s enough food and beverages for all the guests.

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Some celebrations involve a small cocktail party prior to the main meal. Others will offer the main meal at the reception and an open bar. If you’re planning to host a cocktail party, you’ll want to choose the best hors d’oeuvres and make sure that there are menu items suitable for kids. Will they have a separate menu? Will your party budget be able to accommodate an open bar or a partial bar? It’s important to plan these out accordingly. Make all of the necessary arrangements for catering and preparation. Ensure that there will be food options for guests of all ages.

Help your child practice their readings.A crucial part of any bar mitzvah is the readings. By this point, your child will have already spent time studying Hebrew and attending services to understand more about Judaism. Help your child practice their Torah portion and make sure that they’re comfortable with the material. If not, then you’ll want to hire a tutor and seek the assistance of your rabbi to help your child navigate this aspect of the service.

Send out invitations and organize a rehearsal.

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Once all of the plans have been arranged, you’ll want to send out invitations, giving guests plenty of time to make the necessary accommodations to attend. If your child is interested in the process, they can even help choose the invitations and add their own personal touch. By this point, you should already have a guest list in mind. A few days before the bar or bat mitzvah, it’s important to organize a rehearsal to ensure that everyone who has a part knows exactly what to do. Rehearsals can help your child feel more prepared for the occasion, and it really helps to calm the nerves.

The steps above are a great place to start when it comes to preparing for your teen’s bar or bat mitzvah. While organizing such a momentous occasion will feel stressful at times, proper planning can help ensure a smooth experience. Make your teen’s celebration a success by using the steps above as a starting point.

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